Discussion Forums - Questions about PaperBackSwap Questions about PaperBackSwap

Topic: Liquid Damage (3 books in a row)

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: Liquid Damage (3 books in a row)
Date Posted: 10/9/2010 2:09 PM ET
Member Since: 3/30/2008
Posts: 7
Back To Top

I rarely post to the boards but do read them. This is just a rant I guess.  The last three books that I have gotten from PBS have had some sort of liquid damage.  The first book I got, I said nothing about.  I did request my credits back from the last two sellers who both shipped me "Dreams of Ada."  I thought books that had liquid damage (other than cookbooks) could not be swapped here.  Since I asked for credits back on the last two transactions I'm afraid it will jeopardize my account here in some way.  Here's an email I sent to one sender:

I received the book today but this book has minor liquid damage. This is readily noticeable on the first 20 pages of the book and a few of the back pages as well. Although a book may not be "stained" the presence of extensive wrinkling on those pages and spot discoloration (not page tanning) indicates this book was exposed to liquid and dried out. This book also has extensive page tanning as well. There is no evidence of the packaging being exposed to liquid so I assume the book was in this condition when it was mailed out. Please refund my paperbackswap credit. If you would like the book mailed back to you I will certainly send it back upon receipt of a pre-paid envelope. 

When I joined PBS a few years ago, every once in awhile there'd be a bad transaction but here recently what I am receiving is really fit for the garbage. Anybody else seen a deterioration?


Date Posted: 10/9/2010 2:35 PM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,804
Back To Top

I understand the rant!   No one wants to get books that have water damage or don't meet the PBS guidelines.   You are right to RWAP and ask for your credit back.  You are in your right to do this and no, you are not going to jeopardize your account in any way.

However. . . I wouldn't have mentioned this:  "This book also has extensive page tanning as well" as tanning is acceptable on PBS.

Hope you get your credits back!

mistie -
Date Posted: 10/9/2010 3:00 PM ET
Member Since: 9/27/2007
Posts: 2,024
Back To Top

You asked"

"recently what I am receiving is really fit for the garbage. Anybody else seen a deterioration?"

Ipersonally haven't noticed any deterioration in book condition - maybe I have been lucky, most of the books I receive are in very good condition, with a rare one that is a little more worn, but still postable.

I'm glad you marked the books RWAP appropraitely. That is really the only way to weed out those senders who have the opinion/excuse "it's a used book site", " it's readable, therefore good enough", "but I received it like that" or just plain haven't read the rules.

Amy, I hope your next book arrives in near new condition :-)

Date Posted: 10/9/2010 3:28 PM ET
Member Since: 9/13/2007
Posts: 2,520
Back To Top

I haven't had bad luck with books lately (knock on wood) but I have had a bad run like you just did and I know how discouraging it can be. Let me just assure you that while frustrating this will not jeopardize your account. I wish you luck on your next transaction. 

Date Posted: 10/9/2010 5:32 PM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,348
Back To Top

Wow -- 3 in a row.  I'm really sorry.  I think I remember my own bad run like that a couple of years ago, but I haven't been hearing about more unpostable books than usual from other members.  You did everything right. I hope the 3rd time was your anti-water damage charm.

Last Edited on: 10/9/10 5:32 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/10/2010 1:39 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
Back To Top

Actually, the books I have received recently have all been in "almost new" condition.  My problem is a rash of books going "lost". In almost a year I had no books go lost.  Then in the last two weeks I've had two go lost and one more is getting really close.  I reported this to my local post office but they don't have any idea why it's happening. They suggested it might be neighbor kids filching my mail.   I'm about ready to get a locking mailbox.  My worry is that the site may start wondering why I  am having so many books go lost all of a sudden.  But, since they roll the book over to the next person in the FIFO lineup and I don't cancel those requests, I guess they won't think I am receiving the book and not marking it received.

Subject: Liquid Damage
Date Posted: 11/6/2010 1:48 PM ET
Member Since: 3/30/2008
Posts: 7
Back To Top

Well it's happened again.  I had 3 books in a row damaged, then the 4th one came in just fine.  Today I received another book with obvious liquid damage.  The back 100 pages have extensive wrinkling at the bottom edge and the page do not lay flat.  To me this is a sign of liquid damage that has dried out.  Thanks a lot to the person who sent me the damaged copy "One Thousand White Women."  I wish PBS would allow us to choose whom we receive books from because this is getting ridiculous.  I'd like to be able to choose someone with a high percentage of good transactions and not a first in first out basis.  If you have a low rating as a swapper you should be at the end of the list. 

Date Posted: 11/6/2010 2:15 PM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2006
Posts: 6,436
Back To Top

Speaking of liquid damage, do we have a consensus on the "wavy from sweaty fingerprints" issue? Just got a book full of 'em. To me this would be unpostable but I've seen differing opinions.

Date Posted: 11/7/2010 1:58 AM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2006
Posts: 4,984
Back To Top

Sorry to hear you're having problems Amy.  Is it possible that the books are getting liquid damage in transit?  Depending on where you live and the quality of the paper of the book you're requesting, humidity and rain can cause pages to go wavy while en route. 

If you think environment may have some factor in your bad luck lately, perhaps consider adding a RC to your account requesting sender wrap books in a layer of plastic or other waterproofing material to avoid damage while books are on their way to you.  That way you know when a book arrives that it's for sure damaged because the sender sent it in that condition and not because of an unfortunate accident while in the Post Office's hands.

Date Posted: 11/7/2010 1:19 AM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,804
Back To Top

Are you sure this isn't just cheap paper wrinkling?  More and more books that I buy new are wrinkled by the time I finish with them.  It isn't water damage, it's just cheaply made.  I've even seen some brand new books that you'd swear was damaged by water.

Date Posted: 11/7/2010 12:33 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
Back To Top

Are you sure the damage was there when the person sent the book?  What was the condition of the wrapper?  It's possible they got water damaged because they didn't wrap the book in plastic and the outer covering got wet.

Date Posted: 11/7/2010 8:56 PM ET
Member Since: 7/30/2005
Posts: 587
Back To Top

The cheap paper the publishers use for mass market paperbacks becomes wavy very quickly.  Sometimes it's wavy on the shelves at the bookstore.  Could it just be the paper and not actual water damage?

Subject: Liquid damage
Date Posted: 11/8/2010 2:57 AM ET
Member Since: 3/28/2009
Posts: 9
Back To Top

I confess I was a bit relieved to find that others were receiving books with this problem. I just received 2 in a row and 2 others within the last 2 months. The first sender insisted that the book was "fine" when she sent it and it had to be the post office fault. When I told her that was not possible because the outer wrapping was entirely dry and the inside book looked as tho' a cup of coffee had spilt upon the front cover and first 10 pgs. I was told I was a liar and my credit was certainly not going to be returned because that was just my tough luck! 2 other senders simply ignored me altogether. But the last lady ( whose book had evidently been dropped in the bath while being read by candlelight) was most gracious and did return my credit -- altho' she did say she had thought it was fine to post the book as even tho' every single page was wrinkled and stained the book was "still readable"! 

  I've also had several books go missing after I mailed them ( In perfectly fine and well-fitted BOXES from Amazon no less!) I am becoming cynical enough to think that the recipients are simply not marking them as received. I'm going to either go with PBS postage or delivery confirmation from PO from now on.

   I'm polite in my requests for my credit returns and also point out that the rules for posting a book are readily readable and show clearly when a book is posted. But I suppose scammers will scam as it is their nature.  99 percent of the books I've gotten from PBS are either new or nearly so and it's still the best bargain out there. Now if I can restrain myself from spending over $100 per month on the new PBS Market books I will be even happier.....

Date Posted: 11/10/2010 3:46 PM ET
Member Since: 10/24/2008
Posts: 1,470
Back To Top

What's with the posting of unpostable books lately? I got one and the sender got really defensive and told me my standards were different than hers. Hello, you posted a liquid damaged book. What did she expect me to do.

Date Posted: 11/10/2010 4:21 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,086
Back To Top

do we have a consensus on the "wavy from sweaty fingerprints" issue?

I don't know about consensus. I have normal fingers, not particularly sweaty, and I have had a few books (usually brand new) get those fingerprints from reading them. I've also received some in the mail that way already.

I think they are still postable. because it is my opinion that "normal reading activity" cannot render a book to be unpostable (due to water damage, anyway). If I read a book with clean hands, without eating over it, and without spilling or dripping anything on it, then it cannot possibly be water damaged. IMO.

Last Edited on: 11/10/10 4:22 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/10/2010 4:52 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
Back To Top

Fingerprint issues- I see them as postable, its not water damage or really sweaty fingers. Its the paper stretching from being cheap and thin.   As someone who has seen sweaty finger damaged books it does look different..actual sweaty finger prints does look alot more like water damage (there is usually a color difference).